Wood’s Homes is so much more…
September 12, 2018
To truly share my first impression of Wood’s Homes, I have to step back ten years. In September 2008, I was 14 years old, and I tagged along with my dad for a Day of Caring at the Parkdale Campus to re-paint the rooms in the cottages. At the time, I had no concept of what Wood’s Homes was, or the work that the agency was doing, but throughout the day I learned, quite quickly, that the experiences I had growing up were very different than the experiences of the clients. I can remember feeling shocked, angry, and upset that these children and teens were struggling to live the same kind of life that I was clearly taking for granted. That day became my first step in a long journey of volunteering, both within the Calgary community and in the larger community abroad. I have dedicated a lot of time trying to make even a small difference in the lives of those who need it most.
Moving forward through the last 10 years, Wood’s Homes has consistently been in the periphery of my life, as my dad serves on the Board of Directors. He would come home with stories about what Wood’s Homes has accomplished and how it has grown and changed, and share tidbits about the innovative new programs that were taking shape, always with excitement and pride in his voice. This left me with a lot of respect for the organization, for its ability to positively touch so many lives in the Calgary community. My interest in Wood’s Homes grew even more as I stepped into the working world, as I have always strived to work with companies or agencies that work within the social sustainability realm, and was thrilled to see a position open up in the Foundation.
When I was then given the opportunity to become part of this organization, I came through the doors already impressed by it – knowing that it strives to do as much as it can for its clients to make each of their journeys with mental health challenges as smooth as possible. But, with all the background knowledge I had about this agency, I had no idea how dedicated, supportive, complex, exciting, and fierce each and every individual I have had the pleasure of meeting is. The staff at Wood’s Homes, whether they are front-line or administrative, are committed to moving this agency forward with ferocity; and such ferocity is contagious. Each innovative stride always has the needs of the diverse clients in mind because the staff are truly connected to each and every one. As each client or family who comes to Wood’s Homes is unique, so is their individual care. The customization and specialization Wood’s Homes offers is truly remarkable, and it goes to show how committed this agency is in the pursuit of the best treatment services in children’s mental health.
Ralph Waldo Emerson once stated that, “In essence, that what you are shouts at me so loudly, I cannot hear a word you are saying”, and that is true of the staff at Wood’s Homes. They truly embody its mantra as they are determined to Never Say No, persevere to Never Give Up, and are committed to Never Turn Anyone Away. I am proud to call myself part of the Wood’s Homes family and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for this agency in the future.